Friday, July 22, 2011

The Friday Forum - July 22

The cleome - so delicate and so pretty! Unfortunately, it has been so hot here for the last few days, the cleomes close up in the afternoon to preserve and protect their moisture. Today is predicted to be the worst day of the week, with a heat index around 120 degrees. The heat wouldn't be that bad, except for the humidity, which lends a sticky, uncomfortable feeling to the skin in minutes. Time to bring out those wonderful, hydrating mist sprays! Please remember to leave out water for wildlife. I saw one of my foxes drinking early this morning - that made me happy.

This week was historic, but also sad. For years, I worked as a consultant to NASA and have memories I'll always cherish: seeing the Space Shuttle in a hanger, long before the first launch, experiencing the sheer energy and exhilaration of a launch up close - more than I can recount in a short blog post. Now, as the Shuttle program has ended, and we don't know where NASA is headed, I feel a loss. Even worse, though, I worry about all the people who worked on the program. They are losing their jobs, their lifelong passions, as NASA shuts down a program that has made the United States a leader in space. With the economy in tatters again, what will become of all those members of the NASA family? I know it's going to be hard for them to move on. From one blogger to all of them...Bravo, job well done!

Tonight, I plan to attend a Sisley event at Neiman Marcus Tysons Galleria. It's a master class with Sisley's top trainer, accompanied by wine and nibbles. I can't think of a better way to spend an evening: in an air-conditioned room talking beauty. Since it's summer and so many head out of the DC area in July, there are spaces available (or there were yesterday). If you live nearby and would like to attend, call (703) 761-1600 and ask for Kathy Shoreman at extension 3268.

The fall beauty collections are filtering into the stores or making their debuts online, and I'm impressed. I've tried to give you sneak peeks as I've received the photos so that you can be as tempted as I am. My wish list is growing (Guerlain, Giorgio Armani, Chanel, Le Métier de Beauté, and more). Not only that, the latest fragrance introductions, plus my exploration of scents and lines, have stunned me (and my wallet). I'm really enjoying the "trip." I did order Cartier's Baiser Volé Eau de Parfum (I asked for help on that purchase last week). I hope it arrives today, and I hope I love it as much as I love the company's baby big cat ads!

It's time for The Friday Forum, our open chat. Did you find any deals you couldn't resist this week? Are you using a fabulous product and want to sing its praises? Did you find a beauty product disappointing? Do you have a question others might be able to answer? Want to talk about skin care? What's new in your life? Just use the comments. Don't be shy. Just make sure to ask any question you might have over the weekend. By early the next week, most (not all) readers have moved on.

The giveaway contest for Kate Somerville's Daily Detox Cleanser ends tomorrow, July 23, at midnight. Make sure to enter before then!

Photo by Best Things in Beauty


Rachel said...

I was at my local Bobby brown counter this week picking one of their metallic lip color collections when the lovely woman told me she only had three left and that when putting together the new displays she noticed there was no room for the metallic line. Woe! So I snagged an extra metallic lip color just in case. Not necessarily a deal, but I feel lucky I got in before they were out of sock, just in case.

Charlestongirl said...

Oh oh, Rachel!

That's a sure sign that a product is history. Good for you to pick up an extra one! I'll have to ask about their fate later today.

Shannon (Lipstick Musings) said...

I would love to see a comprehensive landscape-style shot of your garden! The individual flowers you shoot for us are always gorgeous, and I can't even imagine how lovely they must be in their proper context.

I've done some serious thinking and am putting myself on a reduced-buy. I'm still going to get new items (probably a lot), but after going through my entire collection the other day, I realize I'm suffering from "too much stuffitis" and it's time to start re-appreciating what I already have. I'm also going to start being a bit more judicious about what I purchase. Do I already have something nearly identical? Is the quality truly extraordinary?

I've been far to quick to jump on "new" and "LE" items lately with very little thought to whether or not they are needed or even fit my lifestyle. Time to work on editing more and accumulating less--which is something you will help me with immensely with your comprehensive reviews!

kkc135 said...

Having found your blog while living in the DC area, I enjoyed reading about places I could personally visit - i.e. Neiman Marcus, Tyson's Corner etc. We have since moved to Huntsville AL and your mention of the Space shuttle was poignant. The landing was big news here as Huntsville has a long history with the space program. The local news reported that the day after the landing 4000 pink slips went out. Kind of scary to think about where we as a nation are heading.

Thanks for all the insight on upcoming collections. With Huntsville not being anything like the DC area in terms of availability of great products; knowing whats out there helps one keep up to date.

Stay cool......Kim

Charlestongirl said...

Hi Kim,

I visited Huntsville for NASA years ago! It was a much smaller city then.

Thanks for the NASA comment. I still think of the NASA family as my own. Everyone was so good to me (loved those pilots who took me in to see the top-secret M2F2). They are very special people - and amazingly talented. I hate to see them lose their jobs, basically because our economy cannot support the pride of American space exploration - or because we've lost our vision.

Just NASA centers across the country, yesterday they celebrated what continues to be an awesome achievement. Today, they are jobless. I saw on the news today that Titusville is half-empty, real estate values have tanked, and shopping centers are closing. Once a vibrant town filled with tourists and employees/contractors, now I guess it will return to its roots as the boondocks of Florida. How can this be good for our country?

We are blessed with great shopping here. Give me a shout if you come visit!

Laetitia said...

You have foxes! How fabulous. I saw a little baby bunny ambling about in my garden yesterday, and it put life into perspective for a few moments.

The news about the shuttle program is very disappointing -- I guess we won't be colonizing Mars anytime soon. I wonder how this decision will impact future generations and continued innovation in America.

I hope you enjoy your Sisley master class. I have been loving the new cellulite treatment -- worth the Sisley premium! Please share if any new products are coming on line :).

Charlestongirl said...

Oh Shannon,

That's so sensible, but unlikely to last. We addicts get bitten by the "new," and it's hard to be realistic. I applaud you, though.

If I were to inventory all the neutral eye shadows I own, I would scare myself.

Charlestongirl said...

Hi Laetitia!

I will definitely share Sisley news. I love the company and use many of its products.

I am not a believer in cellulite creams, though. I've never used (or seen) a cream that could dissolve fat cells.

I'm interested that you like the Sisley one. Is it firming?

Laetitia said...

I like to think of the new Sisley Phyto-Svelte as a body-contouring helper. I wouldn't classify it as particularly firming, but I would say it helps to provide a leaner-appearing contour to the body -- particularly if you are in good shape already and just want a little extra help. I didn't really think serums or creams could help with remodeling adipose deposits, but Euoko's divine neck cream has certainly lived up to its claims and so has this new product from Sisley. There is even a lymphatic massage on their website.

Charlestongirl said...

I'll find out more tonight, Laetitia!

Thanks. I must check out Euoko's neck cream too.

lovethescents said...

No new makeup purchases for me this week...just an array of various creams and tinctures to combat the itch of black fly bites, acquired on last week's visit to the Manicouagan. Feel free to google it cuz it's stunnnnnnning there!

I did receive a few fragrances to sample:l'Artisan's d/c'd Orchidee Blanche---sadly, a big no for me; l'Artisan's Mon Numero 6---I swear there's peach in there so it's a no-go. Got a large box of scented oils and perfumes from Providence Perfumes, carefully chosen for me by a friend. Wonderful surprise and I'm thrilled with them all! They are literally works of art :-)

Regarding the job losses due to NASA's changes, that is so sad. I do find it interesting to see how culturally people respond to job losses and factory shut downs and the like. You may or may not be aware that when certain factories in France were being shut down, union leaders literally kidnapped and detained company CEOs and management. I'll leave you with that.....

Have a glorious weekend!

Charlestongirl said...

Hi Lovethescents!

Don't you love peaches? They are so fragrant and tasty when ripe! Sounds lovely.

I can't see any agency employees "going postal," but you never know how stress will affect normal people.

Still reeling from the news in Norway, wondering how one person can so callously upend so many lives. Sad.

Kit said...

I have a sad shopping story this week. I don't live near enough to DC to go shopping there on a regular basis, but recently I was there for work and thought I would go investigate the Tyson's Galleria while waiting for traffic to abate.

I admit, I was a little uncomfortable right off the bat, since I was very clearly not the sort of girl who could afford to shop there on a regular basis. But I gathered my courage and ventured into Neiman's to check out the makeup counters. It was a makeup paradise, even if I thought most of the SAs were dressed better than I was. The NARS lady was amazing, very warm and friendly, and I'd selected a couple items to buy.

When I went up to the counter to purchase the items, I was informed that I couldn't use my credit card (a Visa). I had to either use cash, a NM card, or a Mastercard. However, if I chose, I could come back after 5 PM, purchase a NM gift card, and THEN I would be allowed to buy my items. In a haze of confusion and embarassment, I agreed to come back later, and slunk out of the store. A little walking and contemplation was all it took to convince me that I did not need the items badly enough to wait and go through all the rigamarole.

I guess in the future I'll stick to NM online.

Charlestongirl said...

Oh no, Kit!

Sadly, it's true. The store only accepts the Neiman Marcus card, AmEx, cash, or check. I don't know why no one told you that there are teller machines in the mall!

The credit card "thing" has been that way as long as I can remember and is inconvenient for a lot of people. I witnessed it last night. I don't understand their unwillingness to take Visa/MC, but assume it has something to do with an agreement with AmEx.

I wish you had asked for Kathy. She's not at all intimidating, and she would have figured out something for you. I'll ask her to mention it at a staff meeting.

BTW, there is a dress code. I'm sure many of them would love to work in jeans! I sure would. :)

Kit said...

If you were there around 4:30, the person last night might have been me :) I was just too flustered and embarrassed at the time to realize that there might be ATMs about. And I do want to emphasize that all the SAs I talked to were lovely. I was just taken off guard by the payment policy.

Charlestongirl said...

Kit, I didn't get there until about 5:20.

I spoke with Kathy about your experience, and she was appalled that no one told you there was a teller machine downstairs - or that she could go buy the gift card for you, not ask you to wait. We think we know who was "less than helpful," and Kathy is mortified on behalf of the store.

If you ever get a chance to go back, please ask for Kathy Shoreman. Give them a second chance, and I'll bet you will leave in a much better mood.

I really sympathize with the whole credit card issue. If you read my rant on the Nordstrom card two weeks ago, you'll see why it gets to me too.

Kit said...

It's very good to know that is not the norm. Maybe I'll give it a second try.